Coast Guard Aviation Association

Ancient Albatross Award

The Ancient Albatross Officer Award (Aviator) was instituted in ’66 to honor the Coast Guard Aviator on active duty holding the earliest designation in recognition of clear defiance of the private realm of the albatross and all it seabird kin while in pursuit of the time-honored Coast Guard duties.

The Ancient Albatross Officer award is sponsored by Airbus Group and Sikorsky Aircraft

Awards Photo Gallery


VADM Wililam D. Shields 30 Dec 1965 RADM Thomas T. Matteson   05 June 1992
RADM Charles Tighe 27 Aug 1966 RADM William C. Donnell 19 June 1993
ADM Chester R. Bender 28 Aug 1970 VADM Richard D. Herr   23 May 1997
CDR Walter R. Goldhammer 01 June 1974 RADM Edward J. Barrett   30 June 1998
RADM Chester. A. Richmond, Jr. 01 July 1975 RADM James C. Olson  14 July 2000
ADCMAP John P. Greathouse 01 July 1977 RADM David W. Kunkel 13 May 2006
CAPT William D. Harvey   23 Feb 1979 VADM Vivien S. Crea 26 June 2008
VADM Charles E. Larkin 05 Sept 1979 RADM Gary T. Blore 1 October 2009
RADM Frederick P. Schubert   31 July 1984 VADM John P.Currier 14 July 2011
VADM Donald C. Thompson   24 May 1985 RADM John H. Korn 4 June 2014
RADM Edward Nelson, Jr.   08 June 1988 ADM Charlie Ray 6 April 2015**
VADM Clyde E. Robbins 19 May 1989 RADM Melvin W. Bouboulis 22 April 2021
VADM Howard B. Thorsen 05 June 1990 RADM Christopher A. Bartz 18 April 2023
RADM George D. Passmore 27 June 1991
** Longest holding Ancient Albatross

Current Ancient Albatross
Rear Admiral Christopher A. Bartz

Assistant Commandant for C4 & IT

Rear Admiral Bartz currently serves as the U.S. Coast Guard’s Assistant Commandant for Command, Control, Communications, Computers and Information Technology (CG-6). In this capacity, he also serves as the Coast Guard’s Chieflnformation Officer.

Rear Admiral Bartz previously served as the Director of Training and Exercises (J7) at U.S. Cyber Command. There he developed joint training and readiness standards and orchestrated large scale exercises for active duty and reserve cyber mission forces, partner nations, government agencies, and private industry.

Rear Admiral Bartz has also served as the Coast Guard’s Chief Information Security Officer, where he established policies and procedures focused on enhancing cybersecurity in the Service. During his assignment as the Commanding Officer of the Coast Guard’s Operation’s System Center, he led software development efforts for 55 enterprise software applications and oversaw the Service’s enterprise data center. He also served as the Chief of C4 and IT Capabilities where he generated and managed IT requirements for afloat, aviation and shore-based assets.

Rear Admiral Bartz currently serves as the 27th Ancient Albatross, the Coast Guard’s longest serving active-duty aviator. He received his wings in 1994 and reported to Air Station North Bend, Oregon for his first aviation assignment. He was designated a Coast Guard Aeronautical Engineer in 1998 and received follow-on assignments to Aviation Training Center Mobile, Alabama; Air Station Detroit, Michigan; and Air Station New Orleans, Louisiana. During his career, he accumulated over 3,300 hours of helicopter flight time and was credited with over 120 search and rescue cases, resulting in over 60 persons saved or assisted. As a member of the Polar Operations Division, he deployed aboard Coast Guard icebreakers to support operations in Antarctica and Alaska. As well as conducting law enforcement, drug and migrant interdiction operations, he participated in the Coast Guard response to Hurricane Katrina and to the search and rescue and oil pollution response following the tragic explosion aboard the Deepwater Horizon Mobile Drilling Unit in the Gulf of Mexico.

Rear Admiral Bartz earned a Bachelor of Science in Marine Engineering and Naval Architecture from the Coast Guard ·Academy in 1990; a Master of Science in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Alabama in 2002; and holds a certificate in Enterprise Architecture from the National Defense University. He is certified DBS Level 3 Program Manager and a Certified Information Systems Security Professional.

His awards include the Defense Superior Service Medal, the Legion of Merit (two awards), the Meritorious Service Medal (four awards), the Coast Guard Commendation Medal (three awards), and various other personal and unit awards.

Enlisted Ancient Albatross Award

In ’88, the Enlisted Ancient Albatross Award was established to honor the Coast Guard enlisted aircrew member on active duty with the earliest graduation date from an aviation technical school. The Ancient Albatross Enlisted Trophy is sponsored by Airbus Group and Sikorsky Aircraft

Enlisted Aircrew

ADCM J. T. Woltz 08 June 1990 AETCM Michael F. Ferreira 8 August 2014
MCPOCG Rick Trent 01 Dec 1995 ASTCM Clay Hill 20 August 2015
SCPO Gary Butler 30 June 1998 MCPO Kit L Harris 14 July 2017
AVTCM Douglas W. Farence 02 Nov 1999 AMTCM Broderick W Johnson 24 May 2019
AMTCM Bernard D. Irsik 14 July 2000 AETCM Jaime P. Young 22 April 2021
AMTCM Mark T. Bigart 24 April 2002 AMTCM Shannon L. Fortune 18 July 2022
AMTCM Wiliam Beardsley 11 April 2003 MCPO Mark Leichenaur 18 April 2023
SCPO Peter MacDougall 13 May 2006**
** Longest holding Ancient Albatross

Current Enlisted Ancient Albatross
Master Chief Mark S. Leichenauer

Leading Chief Petty Officer
Coast Guard Air Station Clearwater

Master Chief Mark Leichenauer assumed the duties and responsibilities of the MH-60T Leading Chief Petty Officer at Air Station Clearwater, Florida in July 2019. The air station’s MH-60T hangar deck has 8 Jayhawk helicopters and over 155 enlisted personnel. He oversees duty and shop assigmilents, as well as “C” schools; ensuring unit needs are met for local missions and worldwide deployments in support of OPBAT (Operation Bahamas, Turks and Caicos).

Master Chief Leichenauer’s previous assignments include Air Station Elizabeth City, North Carolina where he served as the MH-60T Platform Manager; Air Station Astoria, Oregon where he served as the MH-60T Maintenance Chief; Aviation Training Center Mobile, Alabama where he served as the MH-60T Flight Examining Board Chairman; Air Station Cape Cod, Massachusetts where be helped implement the Coast Guard’s Airborne Use of Force Program; Air Station Clearwater, Florida; Aviation Technical Training Center Elizabeth City, North Carolina where be attended Aviation Machinist’s Mate (AD) “A” school; Coast Guard Cutter Decisive (WMEC 629) in Saint. Petersburg, Florida; and Recruit Basic Training in Cape May, New Jersey

Originally from Killeen, Texas, Master Chief Leicbenauer is married to his wife Lindsay. They have two sons together. He enlisted in the Coast Guard in January 1994. His personal awards include three Coast Guard Commendation Medals, two Coast Guard Achievement Medals, and two Commandant’s Letter of Commendations. He is also a two-time LT. Robert A. Percbard award winner, and the Chief Petty Officer Academy’s Altus Tendo award recipient. He also proudly wears the Coast Guard Aircrew Insignia.